Whimsical Bullshit

Zero Drugs Taken At Burning Man Due To Police Presence

Captain Steve Grabowski and Lieutenant Sarah Jones are up for promotion after leading a valiant police effort that has eliminated drug use at the event known as Burning Man.

Officers Grabowski and Jones receiving accolades for winning the War on Drugs at Burning Man.

Over 50,000 artists, musicians and others wishing to experiment with “radical self-expression” gather at Burning Man each year. The event is a haven for the strange and bizarre and is notorious for the use of drugs such as LSD-25, MDMA, and Cannabis.

Our mission here is not to stop young people from having a good time but to protect them from getting hurt.” Captain Grabowski places handcuffs on a young woman. She was found in possession of a drug testing kit, a tool used to determine what kind of drug a user has bought. “We are in the business of harm reduction,” says Grabowski.

Richard Thomas, an event attendee known as ‘The Postman’, regrets spending his summer building his sculpture ‘El Pulpo Mechanico’, a two story mechanical octopus that spouts fire from its arms.

Richard Thompson's 'El Pulpo Mechanico' which will not pay the pickle man.

It’s not like I can pay bills with a mechanical beast,” says Thomas. “I’m not going to send my three year old daughter to a state school just so I could blow some people’s minds. That’s just irresponsible.” Thomas has plans to open a chain of furniture stores.

Gabriella Martinez, Director of Admissions for UCSF, has seen the impact first hand. “We have had a 153% increase in enrollment for our MBA program while the Art department is struggling to fill enrollment for next year,” says Martinez. “We can’t thank the Nevada Highway Patrol enough.”

The next Burning Man will begin on October 1st, 2012. There are preliminary plans to change the venue to the Las Vegas Convention Center.

Eulogy for the Dolores Park Playground

The Fog Bender eulogized the Dolores Park Playground so perfectly that I feel compelled to do the unorthodox thing here and quote him, in full, so you don't lose anything:

they tore down the playground at Dolores park and i’m bummed about it.

this was the place i went to countless birthday parties in my youth.

the place i would take countless dates to drink and chat on the wooden structure under the stars.

the place i would count hundreds of football sized rats running from the bushes to the big wooden boat that sat beached in the sand.

this was the place i would run off to after getting too fucked up to hang out at the bar.

i would swing on the swing set by myself and sometimes meet other people doing the same thing.

one time i was swinging really high and at the highest point in my back swing the swing decided to break and i flew backwards all the way across the sand and landed on my stomach on the concrete part of the playground.  that will never happen again because they’re putting in a new playground made of plastic and rubber.  no more waking up with sand in my pockets.  no more scraped knees.  it’s kinda sad.

Let's just hope they don't do the same to Tallboy Terrace.

[The Fog Bender | Photo by Alison Zick]

What Happens When the Burning Man Crowd Goes to a Lake For the Weekend?

I know we all love to hate Burning Man, but between the sun, water, DIY waterslides, shark boats, romantic dinners on the lake, swing sets, and epic sunsets, it looks like Camp Tipsy is the place to be next summer.

[Check out all the photos by Chicken John]

Experiments in Poor Decisions: Passing a Cyclist a "Tomato Juice" Out of the Back of a Pickup Truck

Let's examine this tragedy a little closer:

Saturday morning was a glorious slice of the weekend, full of sunshine, eggs over easy, and far too many Pacificos with some of my closest hungover friends.  After a few minutes of pestering a friend following our early morning alcohol consumption, said friend agreed to take us the length of 24th to Dolores Park in the back of a beat up mid-90s pickup truck.  So armed with some “tomato juices” in to-go cups an area bar fixed for us, we were in the back of the truck and on our way.

While making our way down Valencia, we figured it would be kind and neighborly to dish out drinks to passing cyclists.  The handoff was perfect: a moderate approach to the back of the truck, an extended arm, a firm grab of the bottom of the cup, and the drink is onto the next one.

As the truck barreled down 19th towards the decadence of Dolores Park, the rider took a hearty swig from the juice, proving hangover elixirs and two wheels mix just fine.

But what happened next confounds even the most seasoned cyclists.  Perhaps too many hipster cliches at once threw off his balance because as the thirsty rider attempted to return his right hand to the handlebar, the bike leaned left, foreshadowing a sick biff with the tormented concrete below.

In a desperate attempt to save the beverage from the impending wreckage, the cyclist lunged the drink back towards the truck.  A Herculean effort, no doubt, but Starbucks cups are not known to survive the crushing force of failure.

And splash.

Wayfarer privileges revoked.

I Judge Your Crappy Restaurant By What Condiments You Provide Me

That's it, The Crepe House, I'm putting you on fucking notice.  I realize you're the Paris Hilton of French restaurants, but what the fuck is this shit?  Heinz Ketchup and Tabasco Pepper Sauce?  Are we not human?  Why must you treat your customers like dogs, feeding us the Alpo of seasonings?  Are we not worthy of hot sauce with roosters on the label or ketchup with flavor in the bottle?

Shit's about to get real in this lightly-air conditioned chain restaurant with complimentary WiFi.

Drunk Merrymakers Liberate Imprisoned Dolores Park Jungle Gym

Alex Chaffee was on the scene noting, “Some drunk people rolled the monkey bars down the hill, through the fence and into the street. Just another Friday night in Dolores Park!” and “[the] jungle gym is less fun on its side.” 

Looks like the renovation project is off to a fine start!

[pic by Alex Chaffee]

"Is There Any Good Coffee Around Here?"

I found myself standing on the corner of 22nd and Valencia early on Saturday morning.  It was 7:30am and I was staring at the bright blue sky wondering what I ever did to deserve the torture of being up that early.  Suddenly, a hideously light blue BMW convertible [not pictured] pulled up next to me, breaking my meditative self-loathing.

A short, skinny bald man wearing a bluetooth emerged from behind the vehicle's tinted windows.  He was not bald in a menacing, skin-head way, but bald in the “I have nothing to show for my life other than my money” sort of way.  He leaned out the window and yelled in my general direction, “Excuse me, is there a Starbucks or any good coffee around here?”

Startled by the question, I figured I was being trolled by a friend and, in my head, quickly ran through everyone I knew and tried to recall if any of them recently aged 10 years and came into a lot of money. Nope, this man was actually asking if there was any good coffee around the Mission.  I let out a quick laugh, suggesting he was a fucking moron, pointed towards 16th and replied, “You should be able to find something in your price range along Valencia.”  With that, he thanked me and drove off.

For the following hour, I kept going over this troubling interaction in my head, which was a subject much more enjoyable to ponder than my insomnia.  In the four years I have spent in this town, I have been asked all sorts of things: “Where are the great murals around here?” “Where would you recommend I go for a burrito?” “What's the cheapest beer around?” But never once “is there a Starbucks or any good coffee around here?”  He didn't even ask “where's good coffee around here?” he specifically said “is there [..] any good coffee around here?,” suggesting the neighborhood might not even have a decent cup of joe for him to waste his money on.

I consulted my friend from Seattle on the matter and he blurted out one of his favorite sayings: “When it comes to coffee, San Francisco will always be Seattle's little retarded brother.”  Typically I'd tell someone denigrating the great city of San Francisco to eat a big bag of dicks, but maybe he has a point.  San Franciscans love to rep the city's coffee culture, but we don't even register on other people's radar.

[photo by Nick Kallen]